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WWE 2K24

WWE 2K24

Written by Joseph Moorer on 3/6/2024 for PS5  
More On: WWE 2K24

WWE2K took a whole year off to reset themselves after whatever WWE2K20 was. The developers gave us WWE2k Battlegrounds to hold us over, and it just seemed like a wet band-aid. When they released WWE2K22, it was a return to form. It had it's bugs and it's flaws, sure, but it was an great start towards delivering what we expect for our next-gen offerings when it comes to our male soap operas. As we speak, WWE is cooking with the hottest grease. The management is different, and they are cranking out some great material as of late. Needless to say, I was ready and willing to review WWE2K24, with cover athlete Cody Rhodes. This is also a sentence I'd never thought I would ever type. And while Cody has lived up to the hype, I'm not sure the game has the same prowess.

Let's start with the obvious. This roster is really close to being up to date. Throughout the years, WWE usually goes on a firing spree right before the game comes out, which results in 2K leaving the fired superstars in the game. You'll always have your legends, who are far retired or out of the business. They are here for your dream matches, some with multiple versions. Hulk Hogan from Wrestlemania 1, Hollywood Hulk Hogan, and then Hulk Hogan's last run variants are all available. In some instances, this is overkill, because there are 8 versions of John Cena. All of the characters are unlockable if you get the base game through a game mode or two. If you get the 40 years Wrestlemania version, they all come unlocked. The DLC also looks promising, with CM Punk, the Dudley Boys, and Mr. Perfect headed our way. Lash Legend? Yeah? Cmon 2K. Make it so. 

The superstars entrances look better than last years offering due to new camera angles and shots. Some of the models look amazing. And some of them absolutely do not. Batista's tattoos look stunning, and he looks great, while L.A. Knight looks like a Playstation 2 character. It's clear to see, at least for me, that there was more work put into some characters than others. And that might have been the case for the previous titles, but perhaps it wasn't as noticeable as it is now. Some of the hair still looks like stuck-together spaghetti on the women superstars. They look ok standing still during the customization parts, and remotely better in the ring. These faces during the entrances and the victory celebrations just don't look great for a game that usually knocks this out the park. I'll reiterate, this doesn't apply to every superstar, but for most of them, it's not pretty. It seems like something stinks in the arena, and they're all making the same stank face. The Fiend looks incredible. His lantern does not. What is wrong with the mouths? Why do they have so much teeth? 

The legends are worse. I get that some of them aren't around to do the face scanning, but we're doing a 40 years of Wrestlemania. Hulk Hogan looks truly deformed. I don't remember Roddy Piper looking like Mr. Belding's brother Rod. And we couldn't find one high-megapixel-count picture of Miss Elizabeth for her profile picture? She looks like if I created her. (I'm terrible at this, so there's the reference). I don't understand what happened. I'm not a game developer, so maybe it's not for me to understand. I just can't believe I'm looking at a still shot of Rhea Ripley, and she looks like she has a double chin. Maybe it's a lighting thing. This just doesn't look like a PlayStation 5 game. And let's give up on Bianca Belair's braid physics. Just...please? 

Audio wise, I'm too old to rate the 12 tracks Post Malone personally procured, so I turned them immediately off. The entrance songs are all here for the most part, with again, some notable caveats. Ravishing Rick Rude's music is not great at all. It's not the music he usually comes out with. They did this with Ric Flair's music, and Macho Man's music last year. I get it, it's just odd to hear. I turned the crowd noise WAY down, because it was overpowering the commentary at it's loudest. The music is great, and syncs with any sing along stuff with the crowd with the exception of R-Truth with his rap. Don't even think I didn't see if your boy R-Trizzle still has it. Scarlett and Karrion Cross though? Yes. 

Oh, and they let announcer Samantha Irwin loose in this game. Her announcements on screen are brought over to the game beautifully. She even does the "Chelsea Green" announcement. Hate if you want. She's one of the best to ever do it. Thank you 2K for letting her shine here. No shade to the other announcers. The commentary is usually spot on with Corey Graves, Michael Cole, and Byron Saxton. They keep up with the action pretty well, even when there's the maximum 8 people in the ring. It's pretty impressive, even though they just said Jey Uso has gained multiple titles without his family. I don't know if the Undisputed Tag Team Titles count as multiple. But, you know, games. 

Now with all that out the way, let's talk about the Showcase mode. This year, they're celebrating 40 years of Wrestlemania. That means matches that make up the history of what WWE is today at the Showcase of the Immortals. While you're not going to get everything here, you are going to get some of WWE's greatest moments. Some of the superstars over the years have gone on to other promotions, and have since had their stories wiped from the game. Also wiped from the game are familiar faces and audio from the matches, promos, anything WWF, full personalities, and referee faces. Rey Mysterio narrated his own in '22, and John Cena narrated his own in '23. This time it's Corey Graves.

Corey Graves takes most of the liberties, mixing his own experience with some history lessons. There are even some guests sprinkled here and there, giving a first hand account about the match. I honestly wish that they went with another superstar, instead of scrubbing out most of WWE's history, for better or worse. It's cool to see and play through these scenarios, especially for unlockable superstars and arenas, but sometimes it's a slog. You have to do certain moves and scenarios to trigger some of the game's live action sequences. The game though, tells you to put the other guy in a headlock, but it doesn't do the headlock. Corey just comes in, and it switches over.

If you get through all the moves, and lose, you have to start all over. What gets unlocked stays unlocked, but if you want everything, you have to do everything. Luckily, you can skip the actual footage the second (or third) time around, to move through it faster. The good news is this will teach new fans some of the history, like the Mega Powers explosion, and when the Ultimate Warrior was the first to hold two titles at once. But then, Rowdy Roddy Piper VS Bret Hart seems forced in. It's unfortunate they're missing a lot here, though there are some surprises. A good showing, but not the best they could've done. 

My Faction still hasn't wowed me enough to play it, even though they actually hid some unlockable content in there this time. My Faction is the card game that keeps coming back. You can do ranked matches, and play your cards to represent themselves in the ring, and your pride on the line. I didn't touch much of this, because I just don't understand it. There may be too much here. I just wish it would go away. I get that they tried to add value with the old music and costumes, but at least make it where if I come across these retro items, let me play them outside of My Faction. My Faction last year had D-Generation X superstars locked behind that mode. Can we please be done with MyFaction? We have a lot of other cool single player experiences. 

Universe mode lets you take a superstar through their own journey. You can pick anyone, and if they have a storyline in the game, it automatically sets you up to follow that storyline. If you pick someone who is a legend, or free agent, the game makes you pick the show you want to be on, and it takes you from there. The other option is to completely go sandbox mode, and lets you do whatever you want, with whatever superstar, and whatever show. You can switch back and forth between Superstar mode and Classic mode whenever you want. You can choose any match, start or end a rivalry, ask for a shot at the titles, change shows, and even create a team. When the time is right, you can even enter the royal rumble, cash in Money in the Bank, and more. You can tweak things in either mode like when the AI will cash in, change the frequency of the superstar management, and turn on or off certain mechanisms, like crowd hype and injuries. This is the easiest single player experience. More so, the most free. 

My Rise has you taking one of two paths. My Rise Unleashed starts on a show called TBD, which looks like if NWA Power took place in the Hammerstein Ballroom. In this division, you are the longest reigning TBD champion, and you want to continue your reign. The first match is a TBD match (which is an extreme rules falls count anywhere match.) The show seems to be centered around your character completely rejecting the WWE, but a colleague wants to go to a WWE tryout, so you reluctantly go. You are there to scout for TBD, so it's a win win. Of course the WWE stars and scouts show up, to give you some grief for turning them down. 

The other campaign, My Rise Undisputed, sees Roman Reigns vacating the Championship after a very long and successful...uh...reign. And your character has been thrusted into a tournament spanning both Raw and Smackdown, dubbed The Dark Horse. You, being a RAW star, have angered the Smackdown GM, The Miz. The Miz knows there's something amiss, and does not want you to win, because then his show would be without a champion. There's also Cody Rhodes, who came up short against Roman Reigns, and now has the opportunity to win the tournament and take this whole thing. You have to decide what's best for business, and what you're going to do, once Roman Reigns returns from his Hollywood stint. 

You can upgrade your character in both modes, from striking, to submission. You can also name your character, change your entrance, and check social media. All of these factor into the game's outcome. It's sort of a choose your own adventure in this right. At anytime you can check your progression of the campaign. Again, I have to talk about the fact that the characters don't look nor sound good here in the backstage moments. In fact, nothing does. Everything seems thrown together. The superstars all seem like their reading from the paper in front of them, instead of just going with the flow in the ring, written or not. The superstars move awkwardly and sometimes their mouths don't match what they say. Unleashed is slightly better than Undisputed, visually and gameplay-wise. I set a table on fire in the opening bout. That was fun! 

The online modes are pretty much the same here as the last iterations. You can create lobbies, and join any of them at your leisure. Play with people you know, or it'll be counter fest '24. Online has never been fun for me, and the first time I did it here, I jumped into a special referee match. Then the Special guest referee left the lobby, so now I'm stuck watching a character I can no longer control, nor do I have an option to leave, so this isn't good. Stick to playing with people you know, and use online for the character creations. That's the cream of the crop. 

My GM mode also returns, with a little more difficulty to get those first place stats. You have up to 10 slots, and can have up to 4 shows running. You can run NXT, RAW, Smackdown, ECW, or WCW. You can run these promotions with former GM's like Xavier Woods, Tyler Breeze, Mick Foley, Teddy Long, Eric Bischoff, and even your own created character. This is where you take part in a full draft, have a set budget. Here, you set up your show to be the best it can be. It gets addictive, because you don't know what you're doing at first, but once you do, the game tells you you don't. And you're not going to let the game tell you what to do. You get 25 weeks per season, with Premium Live Events, all the way to Wrestlemania.

After the draft, you pick your champion, and then you can start to set your matches. You have access to a lot of match types out the gate, You can book different kinds of promos, like self promotions, or call outs to other wrestlers on the show. You book an opener, some mid card filler matches, and a main event. All while making sure your show stays under budget, listening to your commissioner, and wrangling the superstars. You can sign contracts, use money to perform at better arenas, or a better crew. Your superstars can also get injured, and you can be a talent scout, all in this one mode. Once the show is booked, you can either watch each match you booked, or do what everyone else does, and simulate. This mode is super addictive, and is very fun with friends. I'm definitely going to run it this year.

There are new match types in this year's game. Special Guest Referee sees you as, you guessed it, the Special Guest Referee. You can call the match anyway you want. You can count as fast as you want, you can even look away while someone is being pinned. If you want to be a total troll, this is the mode for you. The Ambulance match is just downright silly. Throw your opponent into an ambulance, and slam the doors shut to win. It's a mashing mini game, but it's fun to see yourself climb up on top of said ambulance, and fight on top. Same with the Casket Match. Stuff your opponent into a casket, to win. Then the gauntlet match sees you trying to outlast up to 10 opponents, either one by one, or up to 8 at a time in different intervals. With that said, every other match type from the other games are here, and yes, you can make your own. 

The overall presentation is as good as it has been. The creation modes span from character, to titles. From entrances to Money in the Bank briefcases. There are few that rival the creation suite that is WWE games, and there is no exception here. While it's probably WAY better on PC, the PS5 version holds its own. There's still some weird physics with in ring weapons, and items. Running into your opponent, and watching a ladder completely glitch out of the ring is still a hoot to watch. I don't know if we're just used to it, or no one cares. As long as I can put you through the table, I'm good to go. All signatures, finishers, and moments are here too.

I've said maybe too much about this game. I love watching the shows so much, that I just want a game that gets me closer to that experience. There's a lot of single player stuff to do here, and that's all great. I think we're going to need a patch to fix some of the visuals. The online is just that. It's not going to be the best in the world. If this is your first WWE game since '20 or before, you're going to enjoy it, but I don't know. This feels unfinished. And some of the wrestlers ratings seem off. Logan Paul has a 90. And I don't care what you say, Greg Miller, that is an atrocity. The game is good, but by no means perfect. I hate to say this, but if you have WWE2k23, you can wait a little bit. Don't rush to the ring and end up like Titus O'Neil. 

WWE2K24 is more of the same. The added matches are a nice addition, but there are some caveats made here. The visuals seem off-putting, and some of the single player modes are overkill. If you're looking to slam someone to the mat with a near current roster, grab this. But be wary - it may need a little bit more time in the ring. 

Rating: 7.5 Above Average

* The product in this article was sent to us by the developer/company.

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About Author

Joseph is the resident streamer for Gaming Nexus. He grew up playing video games as early as the Atari 2600. He knows a little about a lot of video games, and loves a challenge. He thinks that fanboys are dumb, and enjoys nothing more than to see rumors get completely shut down. He just wants to play games, and you can watch him continue his journey at Games N Moorer on Youtube, Twitch, Twitter, and Facebook gaming! 

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